Monday, February 23, 2015

If I'm going to do this, I've got to get serious.

Or perhaps serious isn't the right word, because serious isn't enough. I've been going about writing like it's some kind of hobby, or a once in a while weekend gig that I can just blow off and play video games.

And as long as that's how I feel about it, how I treat it, that's all it's going to be. I can't just get serious about it; I've got to treat it like it's the only thing I've got. If I'm going to be successful.

But I have other responsibilities, tons of them. But really not that many. I mean, I've got a family I neglect already, might as well neglect them by writing. It's not like I have a job. I'm the support person in my family.

I have a personal blog in which to complain about all that, though. This blog is about reading and writing. I'm on page 122 of 477 of The Darker Road, and I write every day but it's all in my personal blog, no stories or good stuff.

I need to get into the habit of writing. This is just like I've said on my other blog, habits. I can sacrifice lots of stuff and write, and still be able to enjoy my family.

Do I have goals for this week? Keep blogging in my other blog the way I've been, keep reading every day. Experiment with reading/writing habits. Write the stuff I don't want to write. Push. Obsess, not in a pedantic way, but in a passionate, creative, flamboyantly insane way. Throw sword, attack with scabbard and lunchbox. 

Treat writing like it's all I have, because it is, and I can't let it get away. I hate to admit that in public because I feel like I'm betraying everyone who loves me. But it's all I have that's mine only. And I don't mean that in a jealous way, like nobody else is allowed to write. Just that of all of the things I have that define me, writing was first, and only and wholly mine. Nobody else told me to write, or that I should be a writer. Well, they have, but that was after I had already decided it was for me.

And if I let it get away it's like I never lived. I mean, I have my lovely children and all the people I ever talked to, and that's great, but none of that is just me, my own, at my core. It's what I've shared with others, what others have influenced me to do. Writing is the only thing that originated 100% from within myself.

I can't let it get away. I've got to hold on to it, lift it above the fires of Mount Doom for as long as I have fingers, as long as a single thought remains in the tattered remnants of my brain. Write.

Tuesday, February 17, 2015

All's Quiet on the Writing Front

Hello, Readers.

I'm still toward the beginning of a book called The Darker Road. So far it's not as good as the other books I've read this year, but I'm trying to keep at it. Chalion was a little hard to get into...but this one is way worse. I'm hoping it will surprise me.

As far as writing goes, I'm having trouble writing for one of the characters. Maybe I'm getting hung up on the fact that he's a man? I don't know. I tried to work around it and things got very convoluted. I don't know what I'm going to do, but I'll do something.

That's it for this week, Readers.

Thanks for Reading.

Monday, February 9, 2015

The Curse of Chalion and not much else

Hello, Readers!

Yesterday I finished The Curse of Chalion by Lois McMaster Bujold. It is the first book I have read by this author, and I enjoyed it very much. It is a classic fantasy setting, one we might call "low" fantasy instead of "high". It is a pretty standard feudal society, everyone seems to be a human, and there is no magic but religious magic, and very little of that.

The first half of the book was slow, but not so slow that it became uninteresting. Then things sped up and I just couldn't put it down. The world is very well built. There are no maps but even so I was able to follow where things were happening. The culture and religion are well constructed and well integrated with the plot. The characters, especially the main character, were deep, sympathetic and believable.

I was able to guess a number of plot points before they happened, but there were plenty of surprises as well. I was so happy with the ending, but a cynical part of me wasn't thrilled with how evenly everything worked out.

I had a thought the other day. These reviews are for me, to get me to the point where I can write about writing, which will help me be a better writer.. I try not to include spoilers, but I may stop doing that. I'll try to add spoiler warnings. I may also try to write notes as I'm reading.

As for writing, not much has happened. I tried to write some backstory for a character but got hung up on worldbuilding and other issues. Maybe for my next book I need to focus on something that happens more in the real world. Then I don't have to worry about stuff like armor or medieval combat techniques, or medieval anything.

Actually, that gives me an idea, but I won't share it just yet. Maybe next week.

That's it for this time, Readers. Thanks for reading!

Tuesday, February 3, 2015

Daggerspell, Worldstriders planning progress, Ejuridae editing progress

Dear Readers,

I finished Daggerspell by Katharine Kerr last week. It's the first in a series. I love series that start with  a character of limited experience, whose world is small, and then broadens the readers knowledge of the world and universe as the larger story continues over the course of the series. The Belgariad is like that, and I have a feeling this series is going to be the same way.

The first book in the series takes place in the kingdom of Deverry. The tech level seems a bit more primitive than most sword and sorcery, and magic is sort of shamanic. The story is about a small group of people and their strange "wyrd" or destiny. They interact across several lifetimes, accruing, repaying and forgiving karmic scorecards.

As for writing:

I started going over the plot of the Ejuridae novel, and I thought of some changes. Once I work that out completely I'll implement the changes in the text, and then I'll go through the whole thing for consistency and language. Then it will be ready for first readers.

I have done a lot of backstory writing for Wordstriders, and I've started to work out exactly where I want the actual story to go. Starting with a bare skeleton and then filling it in. Usually what I do is I start writing at the beginning and get bogged down in the middle. This time what I'm hoping to do is work from general to specific. The backstory writing has been really fun and I'm getting to know the characters well.

That's it, Readers. Have a good week, and thanks for reading!